Our Living Oceans: Habitat

The 2015 Our Living Oceans: Habitat report represents the first comprehensive national summary of the status and trends of the various types of habitats used by living marine resources under NOAA Fisheries purview. The report is part of the Our Living Oceans (OLO) series, which includes OLO: Living Marine Resources and OLO: The Economic Status of U.S. Fisheries.

OLO: Habitat provides a conceptual framework for understanding habitat-use patterns of the Nation’s federally managed species of fishes, marine mammals, sea turtles, and invertebrates. OLO: Habitat will help guide and prioritize research needs to address the most important gaps in information. The information provided in this report will give readers a chance to assess the current situation facing these habitats and to consider the opportunities that we have today to both protect the habitat that remains and repair or restore habitats that have been degraded or lost.

The Report

Our Living Oceans: Habitat

OLO Habitat


Regional Fact Sheets

The two page regional fact sheets provide a summary of information found in each of the regional sections of the OLO: Habitat report. These short summaries give a brief description of the habitat in each region, list habitat issues and needs specific to each region, and discuss some regional habitat-related highlights. The map below shows the geographic area covered in each regional fact sheet.

EEZ map Alaska RegionPacific Coast RegionNortheast RegionSoutheast RegionPacific Islands Region

Infographics and Maps

EFH Levels

For essential fish habitat (EFH) information, the highest quality (level) is important to managers. This infographic shows that currently, the quantity of information decreases at each successive level.


OLO West








Previous Editions

Policymakers Summary Cover

The 2009 OLO: Habitat – Policymakers' Summary is an abridged version of earlier material that was being developed as the framework for the OLO: Habitat. The Policymakers’ Summary discusses the status of habitat types in U.S. waters that are under NOAA Fisheries purview, and provides overviews of seven major issues affecting the habitat of living marine resources.